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Njém Tonology

Author  Akumbu, Pius Wuchu
Abstract 

This study describes and explains the make-up and realization of tone in Njém, a narrow Bantu language spoken from the forest region of southeastern Cameroon over to northern Congo. The nouns have mostly monosyllabic and disyllabic roots. The verb roots are predominantly monosyllabic (CV and CVC) and disyllabic (CVCV), except when reduplicated. They undergo segmental and suprasegmental processes both at word and phrase level.

The Register Tier Theory (RTT) model has been used in this study. The geometric arrangement of tone in this model lends itself adequately to the representation and explanation of tone in this language. One of the major tonological processes that is described in this work is the upstep of low tones. The illustration of this phenomenon in this study stands out clearly as a major contribution which confirms that RTT can aptly handle complex tonal phonemena of tone languages.

In the interest of making this work available without further delay, we are posting it as it was accepted by the institution that granted the degree without further peer review.

  Njém Tonology
Published  2012
Language  Njyem [njy]
Countries  Cameroon
Congo
Subjects  Linguistics
Phonological descriptions
Keywords  Register Tier Theory; Bantu language tone; upstep of tone